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Cell Traffic

New and Selected Poems

By Heid E. Erdrich

Publication Year: 2012

Cell Traffic presents new poems and uncollected prose poetry along with selected work from award-winning poet Heid Erdrich's three previous poetry collections. Erdrich's new work reflects her continuing concerns with the tensions between science and tradition, between spirit and body. She finds surprising common ground while exploring indigenous experience in multifaceted ways: personal, familial, biological, and cultural. The title, Cell Traffic, suggests motion and Erdrich considers multiple movements-cellular transfer, the traffic of DNA through body parts and bones, "migration" through procreation, and the larger "movements" of indigenousness and ancestral inheritance.
 
Erdrich's wry sensibility, sly wit, and keenly insightful mind have earned her a loyal following. Her point of view is always slightly off center, and this lends a particular freshness to her poetry. The debunking and debating of the science of origins is one of Erdrich's focal subjects. In this collection, she turns her observational eye to the search for a genetic mother of humanity, forensic anthropology's quest for the oldest known bones, and online offers of genetic testing. But her interests are not limited to science. She freely admits popular culture into her purview as well, referencing sci-fi television series and Internet pop-up ads.

Published by: University of Arizona Press

Cover

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p. 1-1

Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. 2-7

Contents

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pp. vii-x

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The Poetry of Participation: On the Work of Heid Erdrich

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pp. xi-xvi

“Perhaps the greatest lesson of Indian poetry” writes Osage scholar Robert Warrior “is that it has often shown us not only how tradition is able to live in new written forms, but that it does not have to dress up in beads and feathers in order to be powerful.” Warrior’s smart observation perfectly captures Native...

Acknowledgments

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pp. xvii-2

I. Chimeras

Thrifty Gene, Lucky Gene

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pp. 5-6

Brain Scan

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pp. 7-28

Mitochondrial Eve

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pp. 8-29

DNA Tribes

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pp. 9-30

Morrisseau Creatures from the Woodland Painters School

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pp. 10-31

Microchimerism

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pp. 11-13

Define Chimera

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pp. 14-35

Now, What Is She?

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pp. 15-36

Blood Chimera

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pp. 16-37

II. Cannibals

Fur Trade Tokens

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pp. 19-20

Now, Where Was She?

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pp. 21-42

Wiindigo Pity

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pp. 22-43

Own Your Own: Cellular Changes

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pp. 23-44

Long Pig

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pp. 24-45

The Love that Dares

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pp. 25-46

Seven Mothers

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pp. 26-47

Tick Check

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pp. 27-48

Bestial

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pp. 28-49

Menu

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pp. 29-50

Embodied

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pp. 30-51

III. Tourists

Indigenous Elvis at the Airport

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pp. 33-54

When They Find Each Other on Facebook

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pp. 34-55

Love Plot

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pp. 35-56

Little Souvenirs from the DNA Trading Post

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pp. 36-37

Thoughts of Kids Interrupt My Work

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pp. 38-59

Own Your Own: The Papergirl

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pp. 39-40

Just off the Highway

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pp. 41-62

Quiet Cupboard

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pp. 42-44

IV. Traffickers

Upon Hearing of the Mormon DNA Collection

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pp. 47-68

Now, Where Was She, Too?

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pp. 48-69

Interrogated Self

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pp. 49-50

Traffic

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pp. 51-72

Sleeper

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pp. 52-53

Again, Today

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pp. 54-75

Cold Climate

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pp. 55-76

Two Sides

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pp. 56-57

Paint These Streets

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pp. 58-60

Uncollected Work (2006–2011)

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pp. 61-62

I. Prose Poems and Translations

The Shapes We Make

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pp. 65-86

The Shapes We Make /Ezhi-Zhibiigeyaang /The Way We Write

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pp. 66-67

How We Walk

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pp. 68-89

How We Walk /Ezhi-bimoseyaang /The Way We Walk

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pp. 69-72

How We Talk

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pp. 73-94

How We Talk /Ezhi-gaagiigidoyaang /The Way We Talk

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pp. 74-77

How We Eat

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pp. 78-99

How We Eat /Ezhi-wiisiniyaang /The Way We Eat

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pp. 79-82

II. Prose Poems

Preeminent Gooseberry Bakwezhiigan

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pp. 85-86

In House

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pp. 87-108

Dancer Origin Story

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pp. 88-89

Dancer in Twin Voices

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pp. 90-91

Utopia Hawk

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pp. 92-113

My Fetal Beatles or an Embryonic Education in Commune

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pp. 93-114

Indigenous Foods Allowed in Utopia

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pp. 94-115

Red Vines: Lines for Deloria

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pp. 95-96

III. Prose Originals

Quiet Cupboard

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pp. 99-100

Two Sides

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pp. 101-102

Selected Work (1997–2008)

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pp. 103-104

from 'National Monuments' (2008)

Guidelines for the Treatment of Sacred Objects

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pp. 107-108

Black and White Monument, Photo Circa 1977

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pp. 109-112

Grand Portage

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pp. 113-134

Post-Barbarian

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pp. 114-135

Some Elsie

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pp. 115-136

In Search of Jane’s Grave

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pp. 116-117

The Theft Outright

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pp. 118-119

Elsie Drops Off the Dry Cleaning

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pp. 120-141

Butter Maiden and Maize Girl Survive Death Leap

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pp. 121-122

The Lone Reader and Tonchee Fistfight in Pages

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pp. 123-144

Full Bodied Semi-Sestina

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pp. 124-125

Body Works

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pp. 126-127

Kennewick Man Tells All

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pp. 128-149

Kennewick Man Attempts Cyber-date

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pp. 129-150

Kennewick Man Swims Laps

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pp. 130-131

Prisoner No. 280

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pp. 132-133

Vial

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pp. 134-155

Girl of Lightning

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pp. 135-136

from 'The Mother’s Tongue' (2005)

Offering: Words

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pp. 139-160

She Dances

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pp. 140-161

Stung

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pp. 141-162

This Body, The River

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pp. 142-163

The Deep

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pp. 143-164

Craving, First Month

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pp. 144-165

Offering: The Child

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pp. 145-166

Kookum

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pp. 146-167

First Rice

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pp. 147-168

What Pregnant Is Like

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pp. 148-169

Young Poets with Roman Noses

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pp. 149-150

Another Touch

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pp. 151-172

Nesting Dolls

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pp. 152-173

Craving Release

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pp. 153-174

Sisters Stay On the Other Side

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pp. 154-175

New Born

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pp. 155-156

Offering: Ojibwe

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pp. 157-178

Craving: Bitter Root

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pp. 158-179

Twin Bugs

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pp. 159-180

Vermillion Hands Petroglyph

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pp. 160-181

Our Words Are Not Our Own

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pp. 161-182

Poem for Our Ojibwe Names

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pp. 162-163

In the Belly

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pp. 164-185

Changeling

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pp. 165-186

Remedy

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pp. 166-187

Wiisah kote: The Burnt Wood People

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pp. 167-188

Basswood

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pp. 168-189

The Good Woman

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pp. 169-170

from 'Fishing for Myth (1997)

True Myth

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pp. 173-194

Breaking and Entering

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pp. 174-195

The Red River of the North

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pp. 175-176

Oxbow

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pp. 177-198

Rich Hour

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pp. 178-199

One Girl

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pp. 179-200

Human Map

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pp. 180-181

The Pond

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pp. 182-203

Fat in America

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pp. 183-204

That Green Night

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pp. 184-205

Flickers

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pp. 185-206

Sex in the Desert

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pp. 186-207

Hopi Prophet Chooses a Pop

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pp. 187-188

Wearing Indian Jewelry

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pp. 189-210

Turtle Rattle

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pp. 190-211

Translation

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pp. 191-212

Animoosh

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pp. 192-213

TV News: Detox Closed

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pp. 193-194

The Visible Woman

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pp. 195-216

Future Debris

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pp. 196-217

Sense

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pp. 197-198

Notes

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pp. 199-203

About the Author

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p. 225-225


E-ISBN-13: 9780816599745
E-ISBN-10: 0816599742
Print-ISBN-13: 9780816530083
Print-ISBN-10: 0816530084

Page Count: 224
Publication Year: 2012

Series Title: Sun Tracks